House tax-writers trying to avoid an election-year hassle with farmers are ready to repeal a new law requiring off-the-road business users of diesel fuel to pay the federal tax and then apply for a refund.

The House Ways and Means Committee agreed Thursday to add the repeal amendment to a package of miscellaneous tax provisions and to authorize refunds with interest for any tax-exempt diesel users who have paid the tax since April 1.The Senate Finance Committee has agreed to repeal the diesel provisions retroactive to April 1, when they went into effect.

The House panel also approved tax relief for up to 20 million owners of shares in mutual funds and agreed to extend expiring tax credits for research and development and for employers who hire the poor, and a tax exemption for mortgage bonds that benefit low-income first-time home buyers.

Aides said the committee, meeting behind closed doors, had no problem approving tax relief for farmers, contractors, barge operators and others who use diesel for off-the-road business purposes. Farmers especially have complained loudly that the new law, enacted last December, drains their cash flow and increases their paperwork burden.